Facts About Jimmy Dean

3 min readNov 4, 2023

He was more than a sausage king.

Creative Commons: JeepersMedia

First of all, let’s differentiate between James Dean, the heart throb who died young in an automobile accident, and Jimmy Dean, the singer, actor and sausage king. Frankly, I find the sausage king to be more interesting.

When I think of Jimmy Dean, I think of his huge musical hit, “Big John,” his TV show featuring Rowlf the dog, and his breakfast products. I like all three. But I know there was more to Jimmy than that. So, after some research, here are some things you might not have known about Jimmy Dean.

1: Dean’s signature song, “Big John,” was a ballad about a coal miner who gave his life so his fellow workers could get out of a collapsing mine alive.

Man, that’s the time of thing that could result in a class action lawsuit.

2: Jimmy Dean hosted “The Jimmy Dean Show” on CBS. After it was cancelled, he had another show on ABC called, “The Jimmy Dean Show.”

Actually, the second show should have been called “Jimmy and Rowlf.

3: Jimmy’s journey to becoming the Sausage King began when he invested in his cousin’s hog farm.

Later his brother, Don, came on board in the business and the operation went from hog farm to sausage factory. That helped Jimmy make the transition from hog farmer to hog entrepreneur.

4: Eventually, Jimmy’s sausage company was bought out by a company that eventually became Sara Lee in 1984. Dean remained the spokesman for the products until 2004.

In 2004, Sara Lee dropped him. Dean said it was because of his age. We may have found someone who doesn’t like Sara Lee.

5: In promoting his sausage, he felt that everyday should be “Groundhog Day.”

If Jimmy could come up with something that good to promote sausage, why couldn’t he come up with a better name…




You probably don't know my name, but have likely seen my work. I'va written for numerous syndicated cartoon strips and my gags have appeared in national pubs.